Moonglow on Mercy Street by John Biscello – Book Review

Moonglow on Mercy Street Book Cover

Book Review – The tenor of John Biscello’s new book of poems, Moonglow on Mercy Street, is set in the first poem with the line “stepping boldly and bravely into the glaring unknown.” There is liberal use of the cosmic to explain details of life, and the repercussions of actions.

I enjoyed the strength in many of the compact little poems that summed up a thought in a few concise lines. Many interesting images are scattered throughout the poems in this book.

“The heart, a nocturnal flower”


“They might have regarded

the moon as something distant,

something belonging to astronauts,

astrological envy, and lunatics,”


“the house seemed to be

swaddled in sheer gauze,

and flickering, like a light

that was about to go out.”


In the poem “Middle School”, God is substituted for adolescent love and the effect it has on the one struck dumb by a sudden realization.

The often is an air of mystery to the different voices present in the poems, and humor when complaining to the Universe about the state of affairs the narrator finds himself in. Many of the poems are concerned with the storytelling we do, both as writers and individuals. Birds are sprinkled through the poems as messengers of both the good and the bad in life.

  Thirteen Ways of Visioning a Crow 
 As the crows soar into retreat, 
 amidst a cacophony of cawing and buzzing, 
 think of witches, and how the world, 
 by grievous turns, cruelly mistreated them,
  then do your best to call back the scattered crows 
 so as to seek a forgiveness 
 which cannot be given. 

Biscello speaks of the different types of silences that exist in the world, and the places where things are happening and the narrator observes and records.

to the Lighthouse
 Here it is, finally. 
 A séance for the living, 
 real-time cinema for possessed bones 
 and sad visionless ghosts, 
 who are on the cusp of claiming 
 their spacious reams of empty, 
 and time-locked vagrancy. 

Moonglow on Mercy Street is an interesting read for these cold winter nights when silence is something to identify with, and a good story helps you settle in for the long haul.

Moonglow on Mercy Street

by John Biscello

CSF Publishing,

ISBN 978-1-7360311-2-4

Author Page on Amazon

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